Outline: Decline of the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe

Essay by scbestplayer January 2005

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Decline of the Soviet Union

I. From Cold War to Post-Cold War

a. The Cold War Intensifies

1. The Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan.

2. They wanted to restore a pro-Soviet regime there.

3. The president canceled American participation in the Olympic games.

b. End of the Cold War

1. Gorbachev made an agreement with the United States in 1987 to eliminate intermediate-range nuclear weapons.

2. Both sides had reasons to slow down the expensive arms race,

3. Gorbachev stopped giving Soviet military support to Communist governments in Europe.

II. Upheaval in the Soviet Union

a. The Brezhnev Era

1. Brezhnev emerged as the dominant leader in the 1970s.

2. He was determined to keep Eastern Europe in Communist hands and was uninterested in reform.

3. Dissidents - those who spoke out against the regime.

4. Brezhnev continued to emphasize heavy industry.

5. Communist ruling class in the Soviet Union became corrupt.

6. By 1080, the Soviet Union was seriously ailing, with a declining economy, a rise infant mortality rates, a dramatic surge in alcoholism, and poor working conditions.

b. Gorbachev and Perestroika

1. Perestroika- restructuring.

2. Gorbachev established a new Soviet parliament, the Congress of People's Deputies, whose members were to be elected.

c. The End of the Soviet Union

1. One of Gs most serious problems was the multiethnic nature of the Soviet Union.

2. Nationalist movements emerged throughout the republics of the Soviet Union.

3. A group of conservative leaders arrested G and tried to seize power.

4. Soviet Republics moved for complete independence.

d. The New Russia

1. Boris Yeltsin was committed to introducing a free market economy.

2. Economic hardships and social disarray were made worse by a dramatic rise in the activities of organizes crime.

3. In July 2001, Putin launched reforms...